Orange County News

Fatal hit-and-run driver caught by Good Samaritan

Saturday, June 23, 2012

A young girl was killed in a hit-and-run in Santa Ana on Saturday. The suspect was quickly taken into custody, thanks to the help of a Good Samaritan.

The family was in a crosswalk at 17th and Spurgeon streets in Santa Ana when they were hit Saturday. A memorial has since been set up near the crash scene.

It was Saturday morning when the driver plowed into the mother and her two young daughters then allegedly tried to drive off. But her path was blocked by a woman who saw the whole thing happen.

"I asked her, 'Do you know what you are doing,' and she and she [shook her head], didn't say anything," said Beatriz Jimenez, the Good Samaritan who drove after the suspect and blocked her from driving away.

Jimenez recalls how the suspected hit-and-run driver Jessicah Cowan reacted after Cowan allegedly slammed into a mother and two children in a crosswalk in Santa Ana Saturday morning.

"I say, 'Two girls and a mom are on the floor.' 'Who cares?' she says," said Jimenez.

Police allege Cowan was driving faster than 50 mph when she ran a red light and hit 5-year-old Osmara Meza, killing her. The little girls, 6-year-old sister Grecia Meza and the children's 45-year-old mother Eloisa Madrigal suffered head injuries that left them in critical condition. The two remain hospitalized. Grecia is expected to survive. Eloisa is in extremely critical condition.

Cowan, 33, never stopped. Jimenez, who was in her car, followed her and blocked Cowan's vehicle until police arrived. She feared Cowan would hurt others if she wasn't stopped.

Police allege Cowan was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A container of medical marijuana was found inside her vehicle. She remains in custody facing felony charges, while the victims' family prepares to bury a little girl.

"We can't express right now what we're feeling, but we do ask for justice," said Osmara's cousin Tania Montanez.

(Copyright ©2014 KABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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accident, hit and run, orange county news, melissa macbride
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